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Former assistant to Chilliwack MLA John Martin charged with fraud

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Desmond Michael Devnich has been charged with two counts of fraud over $5,000 and two counts of breach of trust by a public officer.

Fraud charges have been approved against a former constituency assistant to Chilliwack MLA John Martin, following a probe into misappropriated taxpayer dollars. Deddeda Stemler

Fraud charges have been approved against a former constituency assistant to Chilliwack MLA John Martin, following a probe into misappropriated taxpayer dollars.

Desmond Michael Devnich has been charged with two counts of fraud over $5,000 and two counts of breach of trust by a public officer, the B.C. Prosecution Service announced Thursday.

The charges stem from alleged instances of fraud that took place between June 2013 and February 2017. Devnich will appear in Chilliwack provincial court Oct. 8.

In 2017, Martin revealed tens of thousands of dollars in public funds had gone missing from his constituency office, a discrepancy discovered when the legislature moved to a new accounting system. Police and the clerk’s office were notified and an investigation launched.

At the time, Martin said he had confronted an assistant about the money and that the individual was fired.

Martin declined to comment on the approved charges Thursday, as the case is now before the courts.

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